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Time for God

Time for God by Jacques Philippe125. Jacques Philippe, Time for God (trans. Helena Scott)

This slim little volume on prayer manages to cover a lot of ground. It focuses on the private prayer between individuals and God and details some important principles to keep in mind while praying. The primary message I took from this book is that prayer is less about what we do, and more about what we allow God to do in us. The book also emphasizes the importance of perseverance, humility, and making time for God. There are also a few extremely practical tips concerning times, places, and types of things to pray.

I was very impressed by this book and would recommend it to any Christian who is hoping to strengthen his or her prayer life. The book is written by a Catholic priest and contains several references to the writings of saints, particularly Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, and Thérèse of Lisieux. However, I definitely think that the “meat” of the book is appropriate for, and would be acceptable to, all Christians. I highly recommend it for a simple yet helpful guide to prayer. Here’s one of my favorite quotes from the book, which seems to encapsulate its central message:

For the moment, what we need to grasp is that if, despite having good will, we are incapable of praying well, or producing any good sentiments or beautiful reflections, that should not make us sad. We should offer our poverty to the action of God. Then we will be making a prayer much more valuable than the kind that would leave us feeling self-satisfied. St. Francis de Sales used to pray, “Lord, I am nothing but a block of wood: set fire to it!”

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